Serving Franklin County, WA

Board to re-advertise farm lease

34 acres available to lease near Othello fairgrounds

OTHELLO – The Adams County Commission expected to open bids for the lease of 34 acres adjacent to the County Fairgrounds in Othello during its Nov. 15 meeting.

But no bids were received.

The property was granted to the county, and under the terms, cannot be sold. It is occasionally used for overflow parking during the fair, officials said.

It is in the interest of the county to have a tenant use the land during the growing season to control weeds, officials said.

With no bids, the board decided to re-advertise the lease. The current lease on the parcel expires Nov. 30.

In other business at the Nov. 15 meeting, County Engineer Scott Yaeger reported that a beaver has constructed a damn at the Rodeo Lake outlet, raising the water level.

Yaeger said drainage pipes had been installed this year, but a more “permanent solution” is going to be required.

He suggested additional, larger drainage pipes, apart from the lake outlet, to lower the water level without harming the beaver.

Rodeo Lake is just south of the Columbia National Wildlife Refuge. The county is obligated to moderate the water level to prevent inundation of septic systems in the area.

On another topic, Public Work Director Todd O’Brien expressed concerns about hiring.

“We are struggling to get people to apply for jobs” O’Brien said, noting an apprenticeship program had been successful in the past and suggested the county might consider such a program in 2022.

In addition to hiring issues, commissioners heard that a lengthy private sewer connection has been discovered under the Public Works facility on Alder street in Ritzville.

The sewer line connects the “Hangar 169” building at the airport to the city sewer system on Washington Street.

The line ran under an alley, which was vacated by the city of Ritzville when the Public Works building was constructed.

The county proposes granting an easement for the sewer line to the building owner.


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